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Searchfortplus.com. How to remove? (Uninstall guide)

removal by Julie Splinters - - | Type: Browser hijacker

Searchfortplus.com is a dubious application that tracks your online behavior

Searchfortplus.com virus

Searchfortplus.com is a browser hijacker that typically enters users machines with bundling, although users can also add Searchfort Plus extension through the website or Google web store. Soon after infiltration, the hijacker modifies browser settings and Windows registry to be able to start its activities.

SUMMARY
Name Searchfortplus.com
Type Browser hijacker
Official website hxxp://www.searchfortplus.com/
Browsers affected Google Chrome, Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Safari, etc.
Distribution Software bundling, web store, official website
Symtoms Changed browser settings; increased amount of ads, redirects, pop-ups, etc.
Elimination Download and install Reimage. Otherwise check the guide for manual deletion

Developed by Aztec Media (which is also responsible for such browser hijackers as moviesearchcenter.com, 4newtab.com, blpsearch.com and many others), the questionable application is designed having one thought in mind – to generate revenue while exposing users to sponsored content.

To achieve that, Searchfortplus.com floods Google Chrome, Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, etc. with advertisements and displays them whether users want it or not. The only way to eliminate these ads is to remove Searchfortplus.com entirely. You can either download a reputable security tool like Reimage or delete the virus manually.

Soon after Searchfort Plus hijack, the significant changes are made to each of the browsers:

  • The startup page, new tab, and search engine are set to hxxp://www.searchfortplus.com. These changes allow the suspicious app to prevent users from navigating to certain websites (such as preferred homepage or anti-virus sites);
  • Users might be rerouted to unknown domains. Third-party content might be legitimate and sometimes even useful. However, victims can also get redirected to websites of questionable content, such as pornographic, gambling, fake software, etc. Therefore, malware infections and personal data leakage are possible due to PUP’s redirecting tendencies;
  • Ads are delivered to users non-stop. These advertisements might conceal the background of legitimate websites. Also, some random words might be turned into hyperlinks;
  • Search results are altered to expose users to affiliated sites. This way, Aztec Media receives revenue for each click, even if it is accidental. This scheme is called “pay-per-click.”
  • Users can observe additional components added without their consent, such as toolbars, extensions, new bookmarks, etc.

Additionally, just like many other browser hijackers out there, Searchfortplus.com virus gathers a significant amount of non-personally identifiable information (including IP address, browser type, ISP, cookie information,[1] search queries and similar). This data is gathered to monitor users’ behavior online to deliver targeted sponsored ads.

Although Aztec Media does not sell or share any personal information,[2] it is worth mentioning the following from Privacy Policy:

In the event that Aztec Media goes through a business transition, such as a merger, acquisition by another company, or sale of all or a portion of its assets, Personal Information will likely be among the assets transferred in the transaction.

Thus, by accepting the terms and conditions, you agree that the developer can transfer your personal data, in case the position of the company changes. Personal details might end in cybercriminals’ possession and used for illegal purposes, such as identity theft.

You should not delay Searchfortplus.com removal. Do not forget, that the longer you wait, the more likely you are to lose your personal data or obtain malware. Not to mention the annoyance non-stop ads can bring.

The way PUPs are distributed

Security experts[2] concluded that users are unaware how browser hijackers enter their machines. Some people why aren’t that experienced with the computer and the internet don’t even notice its presence. It is possible due to free software developers and PUP authors other use a marketing technique called bundling. This allows developers to add additional components into their installers.

These additional applications are optional. However, users fail to pick “Advanced/Custom” mode and remove all the tick marks that allow installation of add-ons, toolbars,[3] search engines, system optimizers and similar.

Despite free software developers’ recommendations, never pick “Recommended/Quick” settings. It might save time but might also install adware or other PUPs into your machine. Sometimes, these might lead to more severe threats. Thus, saving few minutes is not worth it.

Eliminate Searchfort Plus in just a few minutes

You can remove Searchfortplus.com virus in two ways – manual or automatic. Both methods are effective; however, the latter one is quicker.

Manual Searchfortplus.com removal is only recommended to computer-savvy individuals as tampering with system files without enough experience might lead to computer damage. Thus, if you are knowledgeable enough, check our step-by-step guide below.

For most people, we recommend automatic option. The security software can get rid of Searchfort Plus and all its components by a few clicks. Download one of the reputable anti-virus programs, bring it up to date and perform a full system scan.

You can remove Searchfortplus.com automatically with a help of one of these programs: Reimage, Plumbytes Anti-MalwareWebroot SecureAnywhere AntiVirus, Malwarebytes Anti Malware. We recommend these applications because they can easily delete potentially unwanted programs and viruses with all their files and registry entries that are related to them.

We might be affiliated with any product we recommend on the site. Full disclosure in our Agreement of Use. By Downloading any provided Anti-spyware software to remove Searchfortplus.com you agree to our privacy policy and agreement of use.
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Compatible with Microsoft Windows Compatible with OS X
What to do if failed?
If you failed to remove infection using Reimage, submit a question to our support team and provide as much details as possible.
Reimage is recommended to uninstall Searchfortplus.com. Free scanner allows you to check whether your PC is infected or not. If you need to remove malware, you have to purchase the licensed version of Reimage malware removal tool.
More information about this program can be found in Reimage review.
Press mentions on Reimage

To remove Searchfortplus.com, follow these steps:

WindowsMac OS XInternet ExplorerMicrosoft EdgeFirefoxGoogle ChromeSafari

Delete Searchfortplus.com from Windows systems

To eliminate Searchfort Plus from Windows OS, follow these steps:

  1. Click Start Control Panel Programs and Features (if you are Windows XP user, click on Add/Remove Programs).Click 'Start -> Control Panel -> Programs and Features' (if you are 'Windows XP' user, click on 'Add/Remove Programs').
  2. If you are Windows 10 / Windows 8 user, then right-click in the lower left corner of the screen. Once Quick Access Menu shows up, select Control Panel and Uninstall a Program. If you are 'Windows 10 / Windows 8' user, then right-click in the lower left corner of the screen. Once 'Quick Access Menu' shows up, select 'Control Panel' and 'Uninstall a Program'.
  3. Uninstall Searchfortplus.com and related programs
    Here, look for Searchfortplus.com or any other recently installed suspicious programs.
  4. Uninstall them and click OK to save these changes. Right click on each of suspicious entries and select 'Uninstall'
  5. Remove Searchfortplus.com from Windows shortcuts
    Right click on the shortcut of Mozilla Firefox and select Properties. Right click on browsers' icon and select 'Properties'
  6. Go to Shortcut tab and look at the Target field. Delete malicious URL that is related to your virus. Select 'Shortcut' tab and delete 'http://isearch.babylon.com...' or other suspicious URL

Repeat steps that are given above with all browsers' shortcuts, including Internet Explorer and Google Chrome. Make sure you check all locations of these shortcuts, including Desktop, Start Menu and taskbar.

WindowsMac OS XInternet ExplorerMicrosoft EdgeFirefoxGoogle ChromeSafari

Remove Searchfortplus.com from Mac OS X system

  1. If you are using OS X, click Go button at the top left of the screen and select Applications. Cick 'Go' and select 'Applications'
  2. Wait until you see Applications folder and look for Searchfortplus.com or any other suspicious programs on it. Now right click on every of such entries and select Move to Trash. Click on every malicious entry and select 'Move to Trash'
WindowsMac OS XInternet ExplorerMicrosoft EdgeFirefoxGoogle ChromeSafari

Eliminate Searchfortplus.com from Internet Explorer (IE)

  1. Remove dangerous add-ons
    Open Internet Explorer, click on the Gear icon (IE menu) on the top right corner of the browser and choose Manage Add-ons. Click on menu icon and select 'Manage add-ons'
  2. You will see a Manage Add-ons window. Here, look for Searchfortplus.com and other suspicious plugins. Disable these entries by clicking Disable: Right click on each of malicious entries and select 'Disable'
  3. Change your homepage if it was altered by virus:
    Click on the gear icon (menu) on the top right corner of the browser and select Internet Options. Stay in General tab.
  4. Here, remove malicious URL and enter preferable domain name. Click Apply to save changes. Delete malicious URL, enter your desired domain name and click 'Apply' to save changes
  5. Reset Internet Explorer
    Click on the gear icon (menu) again and select Internet options. Go to Advanced tab.
  6. Here, select Reset.
  7. When in the new window, check Delete personal settings and select Reset again to complete Searchfortplus.com removal. Go to 'Advanced' tab and click on 'Reset' button. Now select 'Delete personal settings' and click on 'Reset' button again
WindowsMac OS XInternet ExplorerMicrosoft EdgeFirefoxGoogle ChromeSafari

Erase Searchfortplus.com from Microsoft Edge

Reset Microsoft Edge settings (Method 1):

  1. Launch Microsoft Edge app and click More (three dots at the top right corner of the screen).
  2. Click Settings to open more options.
  3. Once Settings window shows up, click Choose what to clear button under Clear browsing data option. Go to Settings and select 'Choose what to clear'
  4. Here, select all what you want to remove and click Clear. Select 'Clear' button
  5. Now you should right-click on the Start button (Windows logo). Here, select Task Manager. Open the start menu and select 'Task Manager'
  6. When in Processes tab, search for Microsoft Edge.
  7. Right-click on it and choose Go to details option. If can’t see Go to details option, click More details and repeat previous steps. Right-click 'Microsoft Edge' and select 'Go to details' Select 'More details' if 'Go to details' option fails to show up
  8. When Details tab shows up, find every entry with Microsoft Edge name in it. Right click on each of them and select End Task to end these entries. Find Microsoft Edge entries and select 'End Task'

Resetting Microsoft Edge browser (Method 2):

If Method 1 failed to help you, you need to use an advanced Edge reset method.

  1. Note: you need to backup your data before using this method.
  2. Find this folder on your computer: C:\Users\%username%\AppData\Local\Packages\Microsoft.MicrosoftEdge_8wekyb3d8bbwe.
  3. Select every entry which is saved on it and right click with your mouse. Then Delete option. Go to Microsoft Edge folder on your computer, right-click every entry and click 'Delete'
  4. Click the Start button (Windows logo) and type in window power in Search my stuff line.
  5. Right-click the Windows PowerShell entry and choose Run as administrator. Find Windows PowerShell, right-click it and select 'Run as administrator'
  6. Once Administrator: Windows PowerShell window shows up, paste this command line after PS C:\WINDOWS\system32> and press Enter:
    Get-AppXPackage -AllUsers -Name Microsoft.MicrosoftEdge | Foreach {Add-AppxPackage -DisableDevelopmentMode -Register $($_.InstallLocation)\AppXManifest.xml -Verbose}
    Copy and paste a required command and press 'Enter'

Once these steps are finished, Searchfortplus.com should be removed from your Microsoft Edge browser.

WindowsMac OS XInternet ExplorerMicrosoft EdgeFirefoxGoogle ChromeSafari

Get rid of Searchfortplus.com from Mozilla Firefox (FF)

  1. Remove dangerous extensions
    Open Mozilla Firefox, click on the menu icon (top right corner) and select Add-ons Extensions. Click on menu icon and select 'Add-ons'
  2. Here, select Searchfortplus.com and other questionable plugins. Click Remove to delete these entries. Select 'Extensions' and look for malicious entries. Click 'Remove' to get rid of each of them
  3. Change your homepage if it was altered by virus:
    Click on the menu (top right corner), choose Options General.
  4. Here, delete malicious URL and enter preferable website or click Restore to default.
  5. Click OK to save these changes. When in 'General' tab, delete malicious URL from 'Home Page' section or click on 'Restore to Default' button. Click 'OK' to save changes
  6. Reset Mozilla Firefox
    Click on the Firefox menu on the top left and click on the question mark. Here, choose Troubleshooting Information. Click on menu icon and then on '?'. Select 'Troubleshooting Information'
  7. Now you will see Reset Firefox to its default state message with Reset Firefox button. Click this button for several times and complete Searchfortplus.com removal. Click on 'Reset Firefox' button for a couple of times
WindowsMac OS XInternet ExplorerMicrosoft EdgeFirefoxGoogle ChromeSafari

Uninstall Searchfortplus.com from Google Chrome

Reset your Google Chrome settings after elimination:

  1. Delete malicious plugins
    Open Google Chrome, click on the menu icon (top right corner) and select Tools Extensions. Click on menu icon. Select 'Tools' and 'Extensions'
  2. Here, select Searchfortplus.com and other malicious plugins and select trash icon to delete these entries. Look for malicious entries and delete each of them by clicking on the Trash bin icon
  3. Change your homepage and default search engine if it was altered by your virus
    Click on menu icon and choose Settings.
  4. Here, look for the Open a specific page or set of pages under On startup option and click on Set pages. After clicking on menu and 'Settings', select 'Set pages'
  5. Now you should see another window. Here, delete malicious search sites and enter the one that you want to use as your homepage. Click 'X' to remove malicious URLs
  6. Click on menu icon again and choose Settings Manage Search engines under the Search section. When in 'Settings', select 'Manage search engines...'
  7. When in Search Engines..., remove malicious search sites. You should leave only Google or your preferred domain name. Click 'X' to remove malicious URLs
  8. Reset Google Chrome
    Click on menu icon on the top right of your Google Chrome and select Settings.
  9. Scroll down to the end of the page and click on Reset browser settings. When in 'Settings', scroll down to 'Reset browser settings' button and click on it
  10. Click Reset to confirm this action and complete Searchfortplus.com removal. Click on 'Reset' button to complete your removal
WindowsMac OS XInternet ExplorerMicrosoft EdgeFirefoxGoogle ChromeSafari

Delete Searchfortplus.com from Safari

  1. Remove dangerous extensions
    Open Safari web browser and click on Safari in menu at the top left of the screen. Once you do this, select Preferences. Click on 'Safari' and select 'Preferences'
  2. Here, select Extensions and look for Searchfortplus.com or other suspicious entries. Click on the Uninstall button to get rid each of them. Go to 'Extensions' and uninstall malicious add-ons
  3. Change your homepage if it was altered by virus:
    Open your Safari web browser and click on Safari in menu section. Here, select Preferences as it was displayed previously and select General.
  4. Here, look at the Homepage field. If it was altered by Searchfortplus.com, remove unwanted link and enter the one that you want to use for your searches. Remember to include the "http://" before typing in the address of the page. When in 'General', delete malicious URL and enter your desired domain name
  5. Reset Safari
    Open Safari browser and click on Safari in menu section at the top left of the screen. Here, select Reset Safari.... Click on 'Safari' and select 'Reset Safari...'
  6. Now you will see a detailed dialog window filled with reset options. All of those options are usually checked, but you can specify which of them you want to reset. Click the Reset button to complete Searchfortplus.com removal process. Select all options and click on 'Reset' button

About the author

Julie Splinters
Julie Splinters - Malware removal specialist

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